Incident Response Notifications: How To Ensure Open Communication With Vendors

Vendors who develop and sell software, hardware, and infrastructure have a responsibility to notify your company about IT environment incidents, events, and failures. Incident response notifications should allow for open communication when a security threat or potential threat takes place, enabling you to take swift action and protect your data assets.


Unfortunately, not all vendors abide by these principles. Some companies send notifications long after an event has happened; others don't communicate at all. That's why it's critical to take matters into your own hands and evaluate existing and future vendors working with your organization. It's your data that's potentially at risk, after all.


What are incident response notifications?


A vendor might send an incident response notification after identifying an issue that poses a risk to its product.


For example, you might receive an alert about a potential data breach that affects all users of a particular piece of software. If you use an affected application, it may mean your data is at risk. These alerts help you take appropriate actions, such as backing up data to the cloud, triggering your internal incident response plan, or scaling back digital transformation.


When implemented properly, incident response notifications ensure an open flow of communication with your vendor. While notifications might be frequent or annoying to end-users, these alerts can warn of impending issues that might jeopardize you by exposing sensitive data to cybercriminals.


Vendors should communicate these alerts early and acknowledge issues in simple terms, enabling all members of your team to evaluate the problem at hand and decide on the best course of action. You should also receive updates about the situation and have a platform to communicate directly with your vendor about any cybersecurity issues you might experience.



Problems associated with incident response notifications


Not receiving any incident response notifications — even if those alerts just tell you that a vendor is installing a security patch or fixing a harmless bug — can mean the vendor doesn't care about security as much as you do.


Some vendors don't have the resources or analysts to convey security information to companies in real-time, giving rise to cybersecurity issues. Other vendors might not maintain their products after a specific time, meaning you won't receive response notifications at all. This can make a product vulnerable to cybersecurity threats and put your sensitive data at risk.


Receiving too many incident response notifications — especially if those alerts concern serious cybersecurity incidents like possible malware, software supply chain attacks, and trojan horse attacks — may suggest a product hasn't undergone rigorous testing and quality assurance processes, which is a concern.


Why you need a vendor risk management platform


Using a vendor risk assessment solution like Privva can improve security in your organization without relying on incident response notifications. Privva automates vendor security risk assessment using a simple two-step process:

1. It catalogs existing vendors working with your organization by using your current assessment or creating a custom solution based on your business requirements.

2. It evaluates future vendors before these companies can even access your sensitive data.


Privva is a single platform that lets you:

· Create proprietary assessments

· Assign tasks to vendors

· Compare vendors against industry standards

· Manage and review vendors


Use it alongside incident response notifications for peace of mind.


Final word


Incident response notifications can be invaluable for detecting threats that might impact your business. However, many vendors don't communicate security information properly (if at all), leaving your organization at risk of cybercrime. Using a vendor risk assessment tool alongside these notifications can significantly improve security.



Privva is the vendor assessment solution that catalogs existing vendors and evaluates future vendors based on risk. Watch a demo now.


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